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Ecological and evolutionary drivers of the elevational gradient of diversity

Ecological and evolutionary drivers of the elevational gradient of diversity Ecological, evolutionary, spatial and neutral theories make distinct predictions and provide distinct explanations for the mechanisms that control the relationship between diversity and the environment. Here, we test predictions of the elevational diversity gradient focusing on Iberian bumblebees, grasshoppers and birds. Processes mediated by local abundance and regional diversity concur in explaining local diversity patterns along elevation. Effects expressed through variation in abundance were similar among taxa and point to the overriding role of a physical factor, temperature. This determines how energy is distributed among individuals and ultimately how the resulting pattern of abundance affects species incidence. Effects expressed through variation in regional species pools depended instead on taxon‐specific evolutionary history, and lead to diverging responses under similar environmental pressures. Local filters and regional variation also explain functional diversity gradients, in line with results from species richness that indicate an (local) ecological and (regional) historical unfolding of diversity–elevation relationships. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Ecology Letters Wiley

Ecological and evolutionary drivers of the elevational gradient of diversity

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References (73)

Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS
ISSN
1461-023X
eISSN
1461-0248
DOI
10.1111/ele.12967
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Ecological, evolutionary, spatial and neutral theories make distinct predictions and provide distinct explanations for the mechanisms that control the relationship between diversity and the environment. Here, we test predictions of the elevational diversity gradient focusing on Iberian bumblebees, grasshoppers and birds. Processes mediated by local abundance and regional diversity concur in explaining local diversity patterns along elevation. Effects expressed through variation in abundance were similar among taxa and point to the overriding role of a physical factor, temperature. This determines how energy is distributed among individuals and ultimately how the resulting pattern of abundance affects species incidence. Effects expressed through variation in regional species pools depended instead on taxon‐specific evolutionary history, and lead to diverging responses under similar environmental pressures. Local filters and regional variation also explain functional diversity gradients, in line with results from species richness that indicate an (local) ecological and (regional) historical unfolding of diversity–elevation relationships.

Journal

Ecology LettersWiley

Published: Jan 1, 2018

Keywords: ; ; ; ; ; ;

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